More about Gran Guadalpin Banus
A Little Disappointing
The Gran Hotel Guadalpin is perfectly situated right on the seafront just a short taxi ride from the centre of Puerto Banus. As its four restaurants are positioned on the sea level floor and open towards the beach you would imagine that they'd be packed every night, but they're not. Indeed, most of them are closed every night. I ate there twice and hoped that there might be different menus available for each restaurant, but the same menu was presented each night and seating was only available outside one and inside another.
It is said that the seafood restaurant is open and with live music on Friday and Saturday nights, but I didn't see any guests dining there on either night.
I think perhaps it's worth a visit once, but that's about it.
There's also an Italian restaurant on the ground floor of the hotel and the menu there sounds wonderful, if very pricy. I'd try it the next time I'm there. I doubt that you'd have any problem getting a reservation.....
Quiet Cocktail Bar
Bar Sofia is the name of the quiet cocktail bar attached to the Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus.
The liveliest time to drink here is between the hours of 6pm and 9pm as people gather after an afternoon on the beaches, or while waiting for taxis to take them to dinner.
At first I found the service unfriendly, but I quickly realised that this is because many of the patrons are rude to the staff. Once we developed a friendly relationship with them we got prompt service and quick smiles every time.
The cocktails are good, with generous servings of alcohol and prices that you'd expect in a 5 star hotel. They serve nuts and snaks complimentary with drinks, and little biscuits with coffees.
As with most of PB, it's a pretty upmarket place to hang out and I'd have to be honest and say there's very little atmosphere.
The main comfortable seating is inside, but there's also seating outside and that's perhaps the best place to sit for people watching in the afternoon. Shorts and t shirt by day, smart casual or smart at night.
Abanda is the name of one of the four seafront restaurants at the stylish Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus. It is, quite literally, a step away from the beach and is one of the most peaceful places to stop and eat for a while, with the soft sound of the waves lapping onto the beach beside you.
Tables are beautifully set with white linen and Villeroy & Boch china, but unfortunately service doesn't quite match the image. The first night we arrived down for dinner at 7.45pm, not realising that dinner didn't start until 8pm. When we asked for a table the surly waitress barked at us and eventually, reluctantly, agreed to serve us a drink until it was time to bring the menus at 8! It was offputting to say the least.
The food that followed that night was quite delicious - chilled white garlic and almond soup followed by paella. There was very little seafood in the paella, but the taste was nevertheless delicious.
The second time we ate there the starters were a disaster. I ordered "fresh foie gras" (actually I should have been froewarned when it was spelled "grass"). It was a chilled pate, not the panfried livers that I expected, and at €22 a serving it was way overpriced. My Mum had the local gourmet ham which was served, oddly, with unseasoned chopped tomato on bread. Tasteless.
There's a good wine selection and one of the most popular was a local rose at just €13 a bottle - perfect in that weather! I really adored that garlic soup. It's beautifully served - they first bring a soup plate already garnished with grapes and melon, and pour the soup over this.
Similarly the tomato soup is freshly made, hot, and garnished with poached egg, grilled serrano ham, and deep fried courgette strips. Mmmmmmm.
The last time we ate there we ordered the giant t bone steak for two. It was superb! Such flavour, and garnished with sliced giant mushrooms and fried potato.
Claustrophobic Hotel & Bad Service
I do believe some of the unusually positive reviews must have been submitted by persons associated with the Hotel Management. My piece is frank & too the point & I hope is helpful to persons considering this hotel. I stayed in this Hotel on a business/pleasure trip - 4 days in total. Check in = Disorganised & the reception staff make you feel you are a hassle asking for your room. Waiting for rooms was a problem too, Arrived at hotel after 12 noon & some of our party, including myself had no rooms till 5pm with no where to change. When we did get rooms they were the smallest rooms imaginable (Certainly not 5 star Hotel the more appropriate grade is 3-4 Star)...Rooms 209, 210 tiny in size etc.. Some no smoking rooms stank of cigarettes or body ordour, housekeeping may need to look into this problem. My balcony (209) was overlooking the road & a bar plus was a fie exit for other guests!!. Very cramped & uncomfortable, shower & loo very tight. I'm a petite person & still found myself holding my breath to get around the bed !!. Shower & Safe mechanism caused problems for nearly everyone I spoke to. The hotel is controlled by two lifts which are always in use & jammed. So be prepared to wait for the lifts - They will bring you to every floor but except the one you want, bot frustrating. Some of my colleagues were lucky & received suites which looked great but cost a alot. The hotel was full but seemed empty so the unlucky people with awful rooms had no where to move to. The hotel did apologise for these rooms but I don't know how a couple would sleep, get changed etc. in this room, its soo small. Breakfast selection very good - Staff not around to set a table & are very slow to appear. We had to ask several times to get a table outside (lovely to sit out) staff just not prepared, even at 8.30am, we had lunch outside Lorea Restaurant one day, food not very good, birds appetite stuff, though elegant setting. Try the Mistral Bar (Not owned by Guadalpin) on the beach in front of hotel, good for watching the passers by & posers plus good vibe & cool food. The Main Sofia bar in Hotel was always empty except our group & one or two other guests. But it was early into Summer 06. Eventhough it was an empty bar staff were rude & unhelpful we actually tried ordering drinks for over 20 mins & then when we got a waitress she said her shift was finished..!!! & walked away. On departing the hotel a group of 6-8 golfers were also checking out & their mini bus was in front of ours. An over eager porter took some of our luggage & put 4 of our groups luggage onboard the wrong bus. Therefore causing huge stress & complications. We eventually got our luggage returned to us at the airport check in several moments before it closed. A total mix up caused by the hotel trying to get rid of guests. Do leave extra time to get through the queue of traffic at Malaga airport, construction causing alot of delays. Security check is the worst I've experienced - Very Very slow & messy, no queue organisation, signage or effieciency from staff - People still not prepared for security body & bag check. A gentleman in front of me had two pen knives in his hand luggage. Guadalpin Banus is 10 mins taxi from the port but I think you would spend more wisely staying at the "Marbella Club" - Kempinski Estepona Hotel is fab but a €30 taxi fare into the port, The port has super places to dine or if having a few drinks, but also hosts a few seedy bars. Great for a Stag Party. Peurto Banus is a mix of very up market & very dodgy places to dine & spend an evening. Very posh eateries eg. Los Bondidos, Goizeko & Dalis....are a must and a treat, very pricy. Marbella is a short flight from Dublin for some sunshine but its worth investigating where to stay for a the ultimate short break. If only the staff in the Guadalpin Banus would smile, have eye contact & appear more happy in their workplace, it would truly lift the spirit of the establishment to make you feel welcomed. We did try complain about service & room change but the management were, indifferent we have asked our travel company representative who did accompany us throughout our visit to convey our disappointment with Guadalpin Banus Hotel. For a party of 17 people spending alot of money over a short period we would not return to this hotel.
No response from Management
My husband and I have just returned from a weeks holidays at the Grand hotel Guadalpin Banus. This hotel was rated as 5 star and is priced accordingly. We opted for a bed and breakfast basis as we always like to find our own places in the vicinity for breakfast. We go to Marbella quite often and know the area well, we always hire a car for the duration. This hotel was disappointing, particularly when compared with other 5 star hotels we have stayed in. I booked directly with the hotel over the internet and requested a pool/sea view with a double bed (particularly as I am 6 months pregnant). On arrival we were shown to our tiny bedroom with a view of the apartment block opposite (no pool or sea view) and twin beds. I complained. Eventually, a member of staff put our beds together to form a double. The following morning there was nobody in Management available so I penned a letter asking to be changed or upgrade to a larger room with a pool/sea view. We were told our tiny room was the standard available. However, nobody replied to our letter.
I telephone 5 times asking to speak to somebody in this regard and again nobody returned my call. Eventually, on day 4 we were shown a junior suite, and told this was the only other room available that the hotel was fully booked. The junior suite was 2 small rooms and would cost an extra €100 per night (we were already paying €150 per night). On principal I refused the 'offer'. Each morning at approx 7.30, we awoke to the sounds of trolleys being wheeled along the corridors delivering breakfast to the rooms. This sound would have woken the entire floor and also the staff chatting away very loudly would certainly stop people from sleeping. The walls in the rooms are paper thin, you can hear entire conversation going on the the adjacent rooms, very poor for a 5 star hotel.
However, their pool and pool facilities are excellent. Their Bar and restaurants are always empty, probably due to the inflated prices and lack of atmosphere. I would adivse people to stay away until this hotel has rectified their problems. Certainly their Management need to start responding to guests complaints. I have emailed 3 times since my return, directly to the general manager, and have received no response.
Maybe their sister hotel in Marbella is an improvement.....
Excellent Hotel/Location - some more tips....
Myself and my family have just returned from a stay in this hotel.
The hotel itself is fantastic, the location on the beach is stunning and the décor is definitely 5 * standard. This is our third time returning and between us, we have stayed in all of the different room types which I'll mention below:
Here are some tips and advice:
1) Reservations - the reservations made a mistake with our booking, and although the hotel compensated us at the end of the stay, just make sure that you confirm bookings before you go.
2) Rooms- All the rooms are furnished beautifully, and they have hair-dryers/heated mirrors in the bathrooms. As suggested below, rooms on the 4th floor are the best as the balconies aren't covered over so you can sit out in the sun. Facing the beach, rooms on the left hand side of the hotel get sun in the mornings and the right hand side of the hotel get sun in the evenings.
Double room - has everything you need, a little tight on space but if you don't spend much time in your room, then it wouldn't matter. Again on the 4th floor these have a balcony with 2 chairs and a table and get the sun morning/evening.
Junior Suites - these offer great space with the kitchenette which has fridge and cooking facitilies. 2 of us got these rooms on the last stay, one of us had a large balcony with couch/table while the others had a room with a balcony of half the size. Make sure you tell them that you want a room WITHOUT a staircase (think these are emergency staircases) on the balcony. The larger balconies are absolutely fantastic, very spacious, gorgeous comfortable furniture, you can eat inside or outside. Well worth the upgrade.
Banus Suite - these are more expensive than the Junior Suites but in my opinion don't offer much more than the large floor to ceiling glass windows looking out to sea. The view is impressive but we were but in one on the first floor on the Left hand side of the hotel with a much smaller balcony than any of the other suites, so again it's worth requesting a 4th floor or larger balcony one. There is a HUGE flatscreen tv which is one of the only differences I could see, the couches are larger L-shaped ones, but that’s about all.
Deluxe Junior Suite - now these really are something special. It's basically a Junior Suite with a HUGE roof-top terrace complete with a jacuzzi, MASSIVE L-shaped sofa, 2-sun loungers and tables chairs. The views are spectacular and it gets the sun ALL DAY! The ones facing onto the pool are slightly less private. I would request one on the Left hand side of the hotel (facing the beach), not over looking the pool, as you are looking out to sea and can go up and down the stairs without people who are sitting by the pool seeing you.
Presedential Suite: WORTH EVERY PENNY! If you have the money then these really are the rooms to stay in, with floor to celing glass windows, and huge roof-top terraces, hammocks etc….these are something special.
3) breakfast - breakfast is 20 Eur which in my opinion is a little steep. They do have everything you could possibly imagine, huge selection of fruits, breads/pastries, yoghurts, fries etc. Try and get this included in your room price if possible, it is fantastic, but a little expensive
4) the café (can't remember the name), we ate our lunch there twice and got 50% off the bill…think this happens if you're a guest at the hotel. It works out cheap and between salads, burgers etc, there's something for everyone.
5) service - it could be improved, some of the staff were great, others were not so good, it's the one area that could be improved in my opinion.
Overall this hotel is fantastic. I would go and stay there for a few days but I wouldn't stay there for my main 2 week holiday. It's more of a short-stay city/break hotel in my opinion. The location is great, there's a shuttle into Banus and Marbella every 15-30 minutes. Rooms are great, beach is lovely, pool is lovely, overall I would recommend it.
Now it's finished we loved it there
We have just returned from 4 nights there. It is our second visit having stayed there last April before the hotel was finished. What a difference! The luxuriously appointed suites were the same but the hotel's finished facilities were even better than we had imagined they would be last year. The beachfront position is superb and we had a stunning view of the pool and sea from our spacious balcony. The pool was heated to a comfortable temperature which made swimming very enjoyable especially as we arrived in April. The breakfast was fabulous with a wide choice to suit everyone including a mouth watering selection of fresh fruit. Tables were set on a beautiful terrace overlooking the pool with the sea beyond. The only criticism was that they didnt have any muesli. We had a word with the helpful restaurant manager and he said he would look into it (as several people had asked). We didn't try any of the restaurants at the hotel so can't comment on these. The Guadalpin was an easy 15 minute seafront stroll to Puerto Banus and we tended to try different restaurants either there or elsewhere. The area around the hotel was pleasant without many of the characterless high rise tower blocks. It was built up but pleasantly so with more architecturally pleasing neighbouring buildings than are found in some parts of Marbella. We booked a massage at the sister hotel, the Guadalpin Marbella which was enjoyable. The sound insulation is poor through the adjoining doors but we were fortunate in not having especially noisy neighbours. Also because we had a suite there was a lounge in between the bedroom and the neighbouring room. The hotel pool area was lovely and we would certainly go back again. Overall very tranquil and the suites there are highly recommended.
Waste of Money
OK I may be the first to rank this a terrible but for the money I spent, I truly believe it is terrible. Lets start with check in....I had requested a high floor with ocean view 3 months in advance and called to confirm it 1 week prior, of course when we get there, I get a ground floor crappy view. I complained, but noone seemed to care. I was told that I would have to come back the next day to get a better room. I did that and Öscar (the main guy behind the counter) said he would call me as soon as he found out if we could change rooms. Well 3 hours went by without a call. I walked up to him and yelled at him that I wasted 3 hours of my time waiting for his call, he flatly said that he just forgot. This is not service I would expect from a 5 star place. Ok problem 2...bugs. Everywhere, but maybe that is expected because of the season so I won´t comment on it. Problem 3....left a 5 Euro tip for the maids and in return was left no soap or towel!!! I would think that I would get extra towels for the tip. Problem 4....The bartenders don´t know how to make any of the drinks on the menu. I ordered a mojito and the bartender asked ¨whats that¨. I told her it was on there menu and I wasn´t sure exactly what it was, and she told me ¨I only know basic drinks like rum and coke or gin and tonic¨. I asked her why they bother having a menu with tons of exotic drinks if she can´t make any and she looked at me as if she didn´t understand so I gave up. The food was actually pretty good and we met a lot of nice people, but for 300 euros a night, I think there are many better places. Can you believe that the shower-tub area has no lights????? It is very dark when showering, though the bathroom part has tons of lights. By the way, we had a deluxe suite which was very spacious. Seriously, the wosrt part of the trip was dealing with Carlos, he was inconsiderate and stuck up for no reason whatsoever. I would not go back to the hotel because of this person alone. Good luck if you stay here.
Where to visit: Puerto Banus or Marbella
im going on a trip with my 3 girl friends, we all just turned 21 n want to go celebrate and have a very girly relaxing break.we r planning on going to either marbella or puerto banus. we have got amazing deals for hotels in both places.
marbella- gran hotel guadalupin marbella,,,2bedroom suite with private jaccuzzi, no break fast included
puerto banus- gran hotel guadalupin, 2 rooms, inclusive of breakfast and spa vouchers for each person
price for both r very similar so we dont mind. just wanted to know which place is better to stay,,,cuz both hotels sound really tempting. we r only there for 3dyas so need to maximize our time and get the best out of the trip.
Re: Where to visit: Puerto Banus or Marbella
I'm just back from a week in the Gran Hotel Guadalpin Banus - fabulous! I saw the one in Marbella and that's also great. Both areas are very close together, but Banus is where you'll find all the really big yachts and designer shops.
Whichever one you choose you're going to have a ball.